Protector #1 kicks of a new series and world that’s equal parts Conan the Barbarian, Mad Max, and The Expanse. Of all the tribes that dwell in the hot ruins of far-future North America, the Hudsoni reign supreme, but even they fear and obey the godlike Devas. When the Devas warn of an old-world demon in the conquered city of Shikka-Go, Hudsoni war chief First Knife decides to deal with the threat personally.
Protector #1 introduces us to a post-apocalyptic America, that is equal parts fantasy and science fiction. Following the accidental awakening of a machine by a slave-girl and Yanqui Priestess. The Devas manage to warn the Hudsoni war chief of the destruction that is to come. Will they manage to stop this dangerous remanent of a world that no longer exists?
Writers Simon Roy and Daniel Bensen deliver a reading experience that feels like a graphic introduction to a fantastical roleplaying world. It teases out the narrative with hints as to what was. It relies on the reader to piece together what’s going on and the current world. This roleplaying game feel is enhanced by back material explaining the world, maps included.
The artwork simultaneously captures the beauty of a post-apocalyptic landscape and the rise of new civilizations. It shows off how humanity has endured, even if they only show one brief glimpse of Sussem Ri. Artyon Trakhanov‘s art reveals glimpses of the past, not just by the details of scenes but the details of how the characters dress. The colors of Jason Wordies deliver a palette that’s both post-apocalyptic and grounded in nature with browns and greens.
The first issue is focused on world-building. It challenges the reader to fill in gaps and surmise what’s going on not just through dialogue but the hints peppered throughout the art. It’s a start that has us wanting more than just a comic but something we can explore ourselves.
Story: Simon Roy, Daniel Bensen Art: Artyom Trakhanov
Color: Jason Wordie Letterer: Hassan Otsmane-Elhaou
Story: 9.0 Art: 9.0 Overall: 9.0 Recommendation: Buy
Image Comics provided Graphic Policy with a FREE copy for review